DEA seeking contractor who can burn 1,000 pounds of marijuana per hour

By Brian Newlin

The Drug Enforcement Administration's Houston Division is looking for a contractor who can incinerate 1,000 pounds of marijuana per hour.

According to a statement of work, the contractor must be able to burn 1,000 pounds of marijuana per hour for a minimum of eight consecutive hours per day.

The contractor will need to accept and incinerate tightly compressed "bricks" or "bales" of marijuana that weigh up to 200 pounds.

The DEA requires that the incinerator be surrounded by a secured fence and monitored by closed circuit cameras that they would have the right to access at any time. The incinerator would also need to have proper ventilation to prevent smoke buildup, the statement said.

Following news reports, the DEA said they recieved several phone calls from eager volunteers. They released the following statement to KHOU on Thursday:

"Although we appreciate local citizens’ willingness to offer their help, this is a complicated, large-scale government contract we’re required by law to bid every few years, and there are usually only a handful of companies with the necessary facilities and resources to help us dispose of this material. While it makes for an interesting headline, the truth is far more prosaic - our agents working across the Houston Division make a huge number of great cases, and as a result, we seize a tremendous amount of illegal drugs. Arranging for the safe and effective destruction of these drugs is just part of the job."

According to a report from KPRC, the DEA plans to award the contract to Arizona-based company Tucson Iron & Metal.